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Granite executive addresses Senate committee

By |  November 30, 2022
Gary Johnson

Johnson

Granite Construction Co.’s Gary Johnson testified in front of the Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works (EPW) to discuss a number of aggregate industry issues.

According to the National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (NSSGA), Johnson touched on infrastructure implementation challenges, permitting reform, Buy Clean initiatives and the ongoing situation with rail service.

NSSGA says Johnson detailed the essential nature of aggregates in communities across the U.S. He also detailed how the Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act (IIJA) positively impacted the industry.

“As our country faces economic headwinds and an uncertain future, IIJA funding is laying the groundwork to keep the aggregates and materials industry moving forward to build more resilient, sustainable communities and stronger transportation networks,” says Johnson, vice president of land and quarry operations at Granite. “The certainty provided by IIJA, through the five-year reauthorization of our surface transportation programs, allow companies like Granite to better plan and make robust investments in our people, plants and equipment.”

According to NSSGA, Johnson was the only aggregate industry representative among five witnesses who testified before the EPW Committee.

“Our industry needs regulatory certainty to plan, build and operate our facilities that supply essential building materials,” Johnson says. “The rapid enactment of policies included in IIJA like One Federal Decision would be of great help, as it will streamline bureaucratic review and reduce infrastructure permitting timelines from seven years to two years.”

NSSGA says Johnson also emphasized how the industry is leading the way in creating sustainable materials to reach long-term emission goals.

“For example, in 2021 we replaced 1.5 million gallons of petroleum diesel with renewable diesel blends, resulting in 40 to 50 percent reduction in lifecycle [greenhouse gas] emissions,” Johnson says. “We applaud the provisions in the IIJA and IRA (Inflation Reduction Act) that provide incentives to encourage innovative, technological advancements and ask these grant opportunities come online as soon as possible, with industry involvement, so we can deploy more sustainable building materials.”

Kevin Yanik

About the Author:

Kevin Yanik is editor-in-chief of Pit & Quarry. He can be reached at 216-706-3724 or kyanik@northcoastmedia.net.

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